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Watch the ISS go overhead TONIGHT!!!

Discussion in 'Astronomy & Astrophotography' started by Skywatcher, Sep 26, 2008.

  1. Skywatcher
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    Skywatcher Chief Astronomer

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    Tonight you can watch this spcecraft fly overhead - it will be easily visible and really quite bright - it will be as bright as jupiter is!

    It will fly high overhead from West to East - Those of you below London look high up slightly to the North, Those above London Will see it by looking high up slightly to the South

    It will begin to fly from the West(look towards cornwall) at 20.21.43s, Be high overhead at 20.24.40 and disappear into earths shadow at 20.25.23s

    It will move smoothly accross the night sky and look like a very bright star.

    Other passes over the weekend will be plottable here

    http://www.heavens-above.com/ You can even enter your town where you are and it will give you more accurate times.

    maybe for tomorrow passes you can try a long exposure photo - which will look like
    [​IMG]

    but tonight I would personally just watch it with the eye

    what does it look like through a telescope - well the trick is tracking it as it moves pretty fast ( orbits the earth in 90 mins or so ) but if you can it looks like this......

    just click the photo of the ISS


    http://www.spaceweather.com/archive.php?view=1&day=18&month=05&year=2008

    any questions let me know
     
  2. simonwebb74
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    simonwebb74 Earning my ears

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    Wow, my boy will love this, he is so into space at the moment. We talk about all the planets most nights before he goes to bed.
    I might have to keep him up tonight in the hope that we can see something.
     
  3. Skywatcher
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    Skywatcher Chief Astronomer

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    the times are correct locally by the way - no need to alter them due to BST
     
  4. mumof2
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    mumof2 Serious Forum Regular

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    oh wow, thank you! so if i'm in the garden from around 8.15 tonight i should see it? fantastic!
     
  5. simonwebb74
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    simonwebb74 Earning my ears

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    I now have the list of all times for the Bracknell area for the next few days printed off from www.spaceweather.com

    Hope we see something
     
  6. ukwdwnut
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    ukwdwnut Director of Recruitment Forum Host

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    cool. i saw it last time it was in a low orbit with the space shuttle chasing it, that was class to see :D

    chris

    how do you set a long exposure??

    also last itme i tried to take a photo of the moon it was just a white blob and totally no detail, any ideas what i was doing wrong?
     
  7. mumof2
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    mumof2 Serious Forum Regular

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    what did you click onto get that?
     
  8. simonwebb74
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    simonwebb74 Earning my ears

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  9. keith
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    keith Camera nut Staff Member Administrator Forum Host

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    THANKS this is going to be excellent assuming a clear enough sky
     
  10. mumof2
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    mumof2 Serious Forum Regular

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  11. simonwebb74
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    simonwebb74 Earning my ears

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    Lets all pray for no clouds!!!!!
     
  12. Skywatcher
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    Skywatcher Chief Astronomer

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    Tip1 set your watch by an online timekeeping site like GMT so you have the right time :D

    Tip2 go out in the garden about 10 minutes before to let your eyes become a little better dark adapted

    Tip3 - use eavans above as they do an awesome star chart to let you see the progress and times ( address in my first post)

    Mick on the slr you have to set the exposure to 'bulb' in manual - practice focusing on the starts well before you take the pics - manual focus all the way out to infinity then back a bit. Iso about 200 line the camera up with the area of sky we are talking about - as wide a fiewld of view as possible - I use the basic 18-55.. lens on 18. On a tripod of course and much much much better if you have a remote cable to use rather than holding down the button.

    The moon sounds over exposed in your last image - go for a lower iso and a shorter exposure - it is very bright
     
  13. Skywatcher
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    Skywatcher Chief Astronomer

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    Oh and don't panic - flybys happen quite often - and on some nights you get 3-4 passes to watch so if you miss it tonight we will try again another day.

    PLEASE let me know how you got on and also PLEASE while you are out see if you can spot Jupiter - he will be gone from the skies for a while soon so grab the chance if its clear to tick him off your list
     
  14. ukwdwnut
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    to bulb??

    not seen that will go get the camera down now to have a look

    wht setting on the camera?

    sorry mate how do you set the FoV, im still a novice with manual settings, and terminology :eek: :lol:

    moon was totally white

    mmmm exposure times, how do you do that by just holding the button down, does that mean keeping the shutter open?

    i my know all this but when its explained, i get fried on the terminology :lol:
     
  15. Skywatcher
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    Skywatcher Chief Astronomer

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    You have to use the manual settings mick - turn the knowb on th etop to the M button - then by rotating the little wheel just by the trigger button you can either increase of decrease the exposure times - shortens is 1/4000 th second - longest is bulb which means the exposure lasts as long as the button is held down. I have a lockable cable that plugs into the eos - cost bme about £5 from ebay - a 'canon' one would cost a fortune no doubt

    http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/Shutter-Cable-Release-for-Canon-EOS-350D-400D-Samsung_W0QQitemZ150297491911QQcmdZViewItem?hash=item150297491911&_trkparms=72%3A1301%7C39%3A1%7C66%3A2%7C65%3A12%7C240%3A1318&_trksid=p3286.c0.m14
     
  16. ukwdwnut
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    ukwdwnut Director of Recruitment Forum Host

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    oh ok, ive never used the M setting, will have a look...oh forgot to say in my previous post, i bought a battery operated remote, for £15, so thats that bit sorted out

    off to get the camera and will set it up and have a practice :)
     
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2008
  17. simonwebb74
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    simonwebb74 Earning my ears

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    Wow, I can get a remote shutter cable for my Sony for less than £3.50!!
    A purchase could be on the cards!
     
  18. Skywatcher
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    Skywatcher Chief Astronomer

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    :lol: ebay is great for the peripherals i have 3 spare batetries that cost me only a fiver for all three from hong kong awesome

    good luck mick - focusing is everything oh and use a low iso - around 200
     
  19. keith
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    keith Camera nut Staff Member Administrator Forum Host

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    Field of view will basically be a result of what lens you use... you want the widest one you have, zoomed out so you can see as much of the sky as possible.

    Remember that as Skywatcher says, infinity on the lenses ISNT turned all the way as you'd think, it's all the way and then inched back a bit

    completely overexposed as sir Skywatcher said... you'll see in the histogram everything bunched up towards the right of the screen so you've just lost all of the detail. This is why you could do with doing things manually and taking a few test shots :) but basically lower iso and/or open the shutter for less time

    yep

    If anyone doesmt have a remote shutter release, you may be able to use your cameras timed shutter release option if it has one... so set it to take a photo in 20 seconds say, leave it and voila
     
  20. simonwebb74
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    simonwebb74 Earning my ears

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    I love this place, I have a brand new camera, and now I am finding out how to use it properly!
     

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